Clean Energy

Global energy demand is expected to rise 30 percent by 2035, led by demand growth in developing countries, according to the IEA’s 2012 World Energy Outlook. Over the same period, electricity demand will rise 70 percent, and annual greenhouse gas emissions will rise 15 percent—yet nearly 1 billion people will still lack access to electricity.

USAID works with developing countries to accelerate the uptake of clean energy, including renewable energy sources, such as wind and solar, and also energy efficiency technologies.

Scaling up renewable and energy efficiency technologies can be a win-win solution for climate and development. It can expand energy access, curb greenhouse gas emissions, increase air quality, spur economic growth and often lower energy costs, even in the short term. But in many cases, policy, technical or financial barriers discourage the uptake of clean energy.

USAID’s clean energy programs work with partner countries to establish the foundations for low emission energy systems, with a focus on helping countries build enabling environments that can attract and sustain private investment in clean energy. Many USAID programs also work directly with energy businesses and private investors to ensure clean energy projects can get the financing they need.

Select Clean Energy Programs

Enhancing Capacity for Low Emission Development Strategies (EC-LEDS) is a flagship U.S. program that has forged partnerships with more than 20 developing country governments—from Colombia to Indonesia to South Africa to Ukraine—who are planning and implementing low emission development strategies based on clean energy and sustainable land use. Work under the program may include developing and applying tools and analyses to estimate emissions and evaluate options for clean energy and sustainable landscapes activities.

The Private Financing Advisory Network (PFAN) is a public-private network that helps clean energy projects and entrepreneurs in developing countries obtain private investment. Since 2008, PFAN has helped nearly 40 clean energy projects secure over $400 million in private finance. Another 164 projects are in PFAN’s pipeline, seeking $4.9 billion in investment, potentially leading to 2,000 MW of installed clean energy capacity and over 7 million tons of avoided GHG emissions.

Related Sectors of Work 

Last updated: November 13, 2013

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